Design Delight: 4 watches to know at the upcoming Astaguru auction

From a rectangular Audemars Piguet Royal Oak to a Cartier Himalia Privee, we've scoped out four watches are big on design at the Astaguru ‘Jewellery, Silver, and Exceptional Timepieces’ 2022 auction
Indian auction house Astaguru’s second 2022 auction of timepieces flags off tomorrow. Called 'Jewellery, Silver and Exceptional Timepieces', the online auction is taking place over two days (Oct-20 & 21), and watch aficionados can place bids on a range of watches including a Patek Philippe Ref. 5055G (Lot 19), Rolex Datejust Wimbledon (Lot 26), Patek Philippe WorldTime Ref. 5130G (Lot 30), Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Dual Time (Lot 61), and more. 

We anticipate that, like us, design lovers will find four watches of interest in particular. The Cartier Himalia Privee Edition Quartz wristwatch Ref. 2571 (Lot 10), 18K Royal Oak Ref. 6005BA (Lot 50), Patek Philippe white gold Ellipse Ref. 3567/1 (Lot 79), and Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Gold and Emerald (Lot 99) all have distinct aesthetics that hark back to their origins. We spoke to Jehangir Readymoney, Luxury Timepiece Expert, AstaGuru Auction House, about them. 

Lot 10: Cartier Himalia Privee Edition Quartz wristwatch Ref. 2571 

Cartier Himalia Privee Edition Quartz wristwatch Ref. 2571

The white-gold-and-diamond-set quartz watch has an unusual case construction, which extends to the sides of the straps, making the design look almost oblong. The case is off-angled with a dimension of 16mm, and a lug-to-lug length of 47mm. Set on black alligator leather straps, the watch has a minimalist black dial bereft of hour markers, and sports sword-shaped hands and ‘Cartier’ branding at 12 o’clock. The crown features a diamond, and the watch is circa 2000. 

“This is a feminine dress watch, a semi-bracelet, in which the diamonds are pavéd and laid on pretty much half the watch. The off-angled case also represents Cartier’s unique design language. I have seen another fully diamond pavéd dial iteration but the black dial of this one gives the watch more contrast,” says Readymoney.

Estimate: Rs 4,00,000 – Rs 5,00,000

Lot 50: Audemars Piguet 18K Royal Oak Ref. 6005BA

Audemars Piguet 18K Royal Oak Ref. 6005BA

The Royal Oak may be synonymous with an octagonal bezel, but between 1977 and 1985, Audemars Piguet produced rectangular Royal Oaks as well under the Ref. 6005 series. Though largely believed to not be Gerald Genta’s design, and rather an evolution of the Royal Oak line, the watches played around with the bi-colour trend of the time and were all quartz. With the same integrated bracelet and links, and the signature tapisserie design on the dial, the case and bezel were rectangular and angled at the edges. 

Lot 50 is one such timepiece, Ref. 6005BA from circa 1980. The 32mm x 40mm watch is crafted in 18K gold, with the original tapisserie dial featuring bar hour markers, pencil-shaped hands, and the brand logo and name at 12 o'clock. The case and bracelet feature brushed and polished finishes. The watch is circa 1980.

“The way this watch is shaped really goes back to the 70s and 80s – elongated, rectangular watches that were popular back then. The whole design of this watch is 'industrial luxury', and at that time there weren’t many watches with this kind of design language,” explains Readymoney. 

Estimate: Rs 10,50,000 – Rs 12,50,000

Lot 79: Patek Philippe white gold Ellipse Ref. 3567/1

Patek Philippe white gold Ellipse Ref. 3567/1

Created in 1968, the Ellipse is one of Patek Phillipe’s more elegant dress watches, inspired by the principle of ‘golden section’, expressed as a ratio of 1 / 1.6181. Lot 79 is a circa 1970 white gold watch, with a more angular case than the current rounded ones. But the most striking aspect of the manual winding timepiece is the beaten dial and bracelet. The 26mm x 30mm timepiece features a beautiful hand-beaten texture that extends across the entire piece.

“When it was launched at Baselworld in 1968, the Ellipse was very well received, and was also subtly provocative for its time, given that it did not conform to the round case design of what were dress watches then. Another detail on this watch is of course the hand-beaten texture, which is very cool,” says Readymoney.

Estimate: Rs 6,85,000 – Rs 8,85,000

Lot 99: Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Gold and Emerald Ref. 265.7.86

Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Gold and Emerald
Ref. 265.7.86

The Reverso is Jaeger-LeCoultre’s most emblematic design, and Ref. 265.7.86 is a rare, bejewelled version. Cast in yellow gold and studded with diamonds and emeralds on the case, bezel, and bracelet, the 20.5mm x 33mm watch also features an emerald on the crown. The time-only piece does not have the gadroons seen on contemporary Reversos, but does feature signature dauphine hands, a barleycorn subdial, and applied, facetted and Arabic numerals. ‘Jaeger-LeCoultre’ rests at 12 o’clock, and ‘Reverso’ above 6. Turning the case over reveals a border of diamonds and emeralds on an otherwise smooth back. The way the gem-setting has been done further brings out the Art-Deco design language that is quintessential to Reversos. The watch is circa 1990. 

Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Gold and Emerald
Ref. 265.7.86

“This is a really rare reference, a high jewellery piece. The brand using emeralds on the bracelet is quite rare. What’s good for the auction is that the back is not engraved, so the buyer has the opportunity to engrave it,” says Readymoney.

Estimate: Rs 16,00,000 – 19,00,000

Images: Courtesy Astaguru

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